One of the problems in effectively dealing with China is that there hasn’t been a strong united world response not only to what they did in regard to COVID but in regard to their human rights abuses.
Instead of a tough, consistent approach, we have had the Biden Administration giving a weak-kneed response and folding like a cheap suit on the question of the Olympics, saying we would send athletes but not a diplomatic presence. Big whoop. China mocked that response because they knew it wouldn’t hit them in the pocketbook.
Now Japan has signed aboard the same strategy as the United States just doing a diplomatic boycott, as MSNBC senior producer Kyle Griffin noted. That’s likely to antagonize China, although not as much as a full boycott.
Japan has decided not to send senior officials to the Beijing Olympics in February — a move that will align it with the U.S. diplomatic boycott over China's alleged human rights abuses.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) December 26, 2021
Did you notice something else there? “China’s alleged human rights abuses.” This is why “alleged” is now trending on Twitter — because Griffin wouldn’t go as far as to acknowledge that China has committed well-documented human rights abuses; that they aren’t just “alleged.” Now he’s being inundated with the backlash. If MSNBC has their head so far in the sand that they can’t even admit the truth about those abuses without the caveat, how are they going to be on board with having a real response to those abuses? And this is from the same network that ran Russia collusion 24/7 as though it was a proven fact, with all kinds of nonsensical claims.
However, this isn’t just liberal media not wanting to call China out fully. There’s a little more behind this story and why they are joining the NBA and Hollywood in kowtowing to China. NBCUniversal (which owns MSNBC) is the official U.S. broadcaster for the Olympics and will be covering the Winter Games in Beijing. So they have a vested interest in the Games. No wonder they are couching their words.
Indeed, lawmakers called on NBC earlier this month to use that opportunity while they are in China broadcasting the games to focus some of their coverage on human rights abuses. While IOC should never have awarded the games to China and the U.S. should have supported a full boycott, the very least that NBC could do is focus attention on the abuses while they are there.
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Rep. James McGovern (D-MA), the chair and co-chair of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC), a bipartisan and bicameral committee called on NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell to make such a commitment to covering things like the genocide against the Uyghur people and the oppression of the people of Hong Kong. They also asked NBCUniversal to not amplify Chinese propaganda, like how the abused folks are so “happy.”
“The nearly one billion dollars that NBCUniversal and its affiliates have invested in these Games means the organization bears the responsibility in addressing the impact of China’s human rights abuses,” the letter read.
“Athletes, support staff, and members of the media will be present in a country where an active genocide is taking place, and in adhering with the charter of the Games to foster ‘respect for universal and fundamental ethical principles,’ NBCUniversal must think about what that means for those participating in Beijing and Chinese citizens alike.”
I guess Griffin’s comment is a good indication of their response to the lawmakers. Where is that commitment? I wouldn’t bet on a lot of honest coverage of the abuses if this is what the tweets look like. “Alleged” journalism.
NBC paid $7.75 billion for the rights to the Olympics from 2022 to 2032, including Beijing, so the word “alleged” is doing a lot of CYA here. https://t.co/becheIv4mi
— Tim Murtaugh (@TimMurtaugh) December 27, 2021